In Don Campbell's 1997 best-selling book The Mozart Effect, the author described how music can be used to "improve memory and learning, boost productivity, soothe jangled nerves, strengthen endurance, unlock creative impulses, sound away pain, and heal the body from a host of ailments." Following the success of this book (one in a series of similarly themed self-help and instructional manuals), Campbell has compiled a number of CDs with music intended to aid in the learning and healing power of "The Mozart Effect."
Raised in a musical household in San Antonio, TX, his family's move to France led to the teenager's acceptance at age 13 as the youngest student at the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, studying with the famed conductor and educator Nadia Boulanger. Returning to the United States after a brief period in Germany, Campbell studied organ and education at the University of North Texas and accepted a scholarship in choral conducting to the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. Upon graduation, the young conductor and music critic traveled through Haiti, Japan, and Bali, eventually settling in Dallas with a continued awe of the power of music in every culture and newfound interests in psychology and neurology.
In 1982, he began in earnest to study the physiology of the brain and the psychological relationship between sound and mental function. This led to his first book, Introduction to the Musical Brain, published in 1983. He founded the Institute for Music, Health, and Education in Boulder, CO, in 1988 and served as director for seven years until 1995. Campbell draws inspiration from Christian, Western, and Eastern music; the indigenous music he heard and studied in three years of journeying around the world (he has traveled to 60 countries and taught in half that number); his work as a faculty member of the Naropa Institute in Boulder, CO; and the influence of the work of Dr. Alfred Tomatis.
His best-known recordings consist of excerpts of Mozart's compositions, to be used as accompaniment for his books and teachings. Campbell has also recorded several albums of his own compositions interspersed with new age interpretations of classical pieces. ~ Zac Johnson